padmanabah swami temple Thiruanandapuram and the kings of Kerala from 430 BC

History of Temple
Temple is of great antiquity

 The compositions of Nammalvar, the great Vaishnavite saint, in praise of Sree Maha Vishnu of this city, prove beyond doubt that this Temple existed in the ninth century of this era.

 In the year 1050A.D.(225ME), the Temple was reconstructed and the management re-organized by the then ruler.

1125 – 1145      Raja Sri Vira Kerala Varma I, Kulasekhara Perumal, Raja of Venad, eldest son of Raja Kotha Varma, Kulasekhara Perumal, Raja of Venad, educ. privately. Succeeded on the death of his father, 1125. A great religious benefactor, responsible for the rebuilding of Padmanabhaswamy Temple and the endowment of Suchindram Temples. He d. 1145.

1266-1267    Raja Sri Jayasimha Deva, Kulasekhara Perumal, Raja of Venad, from the Yadu family of the Lunar race. He became a powerful ruler, who succeeded in bringing the whole of Kerala under his control. He esrablished his seat at Quilon, the surrounding areas becoming known as Jayasimhanad or Desinganad

1299 – 1313      Raja Sri Ravi Varma, Kulasekhara Perumal, Sangramadhiran Trikshatra Chudamani, Raja of Venad. b. 1266, son of Raja Sri Jayasimha Deva, Kulasekhara Perumal, Raja of Venad, by his wife, Rani Umma Devi, Rani of Venad, educ. privately. Adopted by the childless Rani Aavani Amma Thampuran of Attingal. Succeeded to the throne of Kerala, at Kolambapuram (Quilon)

(in his 33rd year). He asserted his independence in 1310 and claimed the Pandyan throne after marrying a Pandyan princess, ultimately defeating Jatavarman Vira Pandya, the illegitimate son of Maravarman Kulasekhara I, twice and assuming control of his realm.

The garrisons established in the Tamil country by the Muslim invader, Malik Kafur, were

expelled by him

 He established his rule over most of the southern countries between Kanyakumari and Madras, and as far north as Nellore.

Crowned at Madurai, 1312 (in his 46
th year). He then defeated the Cholas and

was crowned as 
Chakravathi [SUPREME EMPEROR]on the

banks of the Vegavati River,

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and Coonjevaram (Kanchipuram)
, 1314
. During his

reign, Quilon rose to great prominance as a centre of trade and

international commerce
. Author of “Pradyumnabhudayam”. m. before 1310, a daughter of

the Pandya ruler Maravarman Kulasekhara. He d. at Quilon, 1313.

The reign of Ravi Varma Kulaśēkhara,1299 


1313 – 1333      Raja Sri Vira Udaya Martanda Varma, Vira Pandya Deva, Raja of Venad. Succeeded on the death of his cousin, 1313. Subjugated by King Ravi Varma Kulasekhara Perumal in 1316. He d. 1333, having adopted two daughters of the Kolathunad family, whom he installed as Attingal Mootha Tampuran (Senior Princess of Attingal) and Attingal Elaya Tampuran (Junior Princess of Attingal) in 1305 AD. The Senior Princess of Attingal being the ancestress of the branches of the ruling house settled at Quilon and Trivandrum. The younger princess being the ancestress of the Elayadathu Swarupam of Kottarakara and the Peraka Thavazhi branch of Nedumangad.

But till 1314 the Venad rulers practised Patriarchy and spoke only Tamil. After the invasion of Malik Kafur in 1310 all the Tamil dynasties of Kerala were replaced by Matriarchal dynasties. Kolathiri the Tulu Bunt ruler of Kannur send two princes called Attingal and Kunnumel Ranis to replace the last Tamil ruler Udayamarthanda Varma in 1314 AD

1333 – 1335      Raja Sri Aditya Varma Tiruvadi, Raja of Venad.
1335 – 1342      Raja Sri Vira Rama Udaya Martanda Varma Tiruvadi, Raja of Venad. b. 1307, eldest son of the Senior Rani of Attingal, educ. privately. Senior Tiruvadi of Chiravay. Succeeded 1335. Crowned, January 1336. He d. July 1342.
1342 – 1363      Raja Sri Vira Kerala Varma Tiruvadi, Raja of Venad.
1363 – 1366      Raja Sri Vira Martanda Varma III, Raja of Venad. Ascended the gadi October 1363. He d. at Trivandrum Fort, September 1366 AD.
1366 – 1382      Raja Sri Vira Rama Martanda Varma, Raja of Venad. b. 1338, eldest son of the Senior Rani of Attingal, educ. privately. Installed with full ruling powers, 1366. He d. at Trivandrum, 1382.
1383 – 1416      Raja Sri Vira Ravi Varma, Raja of Venad. Trippappur Mutta Tiruvadi (Kilapperur)1416 – 1417      Raja Sri Vira Ravi Ravi Varma, Raja of Venad. Trippappur Mutta Tiruva
1383                   Raja Sri Vira Kerala Martanda Varma, Kulasekhara Perumal, Raja of Vanad. b. 1366, elder twin son of the Junior Rani of Attingal, educ. privately. Trippappur Mutta Tiruvadi (Kilapperur). Succeeded on the death of his maternal uncle, 1382. Reigned for three months before his death.
The next important recorded events relate to the period between 1335 A.D. and 1384 A.D. when Venad was ruled by a powerful and wise king named Veera Marthanda Varma. He gradually established his authority completely over the management and administration of the Temple.
There are records to indicate that in the year 1375 A.D. the Alpasi Utsavam (ten days festival held in October-November) was conducted in the Temple. Some of the important events relating to the Temple which took place after the demise of this ruler until 1729 A.D. are given below.
1383 – 1444      Raja Sri Chera Udaya Martanda Varma, Vira Padya Deva, Kulasekhara Perumal, Raja of Venad. b. 1366, younger twin son of the Junior Rani of Attingal, educ. privately.  Trippappur Mutta Tiruvadi. He enjoyed the longest reign in Travancore history. He d. at the Chera Mahadevi Palace, 1444, aged 78 years.

1444 – 1458      Raja Sri Vira Ravi Varma, Raja of Venad [“Venad Mootha Raja”=“the First Prince of Venad”)]. He d. 1458.

Between 1459 A.D. and 1460 A.D. the idol of Sree Padmanabhaswamy was removed to a ‘Balalaya’ for the purpose of re-construction of the roof of the sanctum sanctorum.

1458 – 1468      Raja Sankhara Sri Vira Rama Martanda Varma, Kulasekhara Perumal, Raja of Venad.  From the Trippappur princely house. Jayasimhanad Mutta Tiruvadi. Ruled until October 1468.
In 1461 A.D. the idol was re installed and an Ottakkal Mandapam (Single granite stone slab abutting the sanctum sanctorum) was put up.
1468 – 1484      Raja Sri Vira Kodai Sri Aditya Varma, Raja of Venad. From Kilapperur. Jayasimhanad Mutta Tiruvadi and Chiravay Mutta Tiruvadi. He established his capital at Kallidaikurichi. A religious minded and learned ruler who

devoted his time to artistic pursuits, charitable and public works. He d. at Kallidaikurichi, 1484.

1484 – 1503      Raja Sri Vira Ravi Ravi

Varma, Raja of Venad. Trippappur Mut

ta Tiruvadi
Established his capital at Padmanabhapuram, ca. 1

His rule witnessed a growing enmity with the rulers of Vijayanagar and the arrival of the

Portuguese. He d. 1504.

1503 – 1504      Raja Sri Martanda Varma, Kulasekhara Perumal, Raja of Venad. He

 d. 1504.
1504 – 1528      Raja Sri Vira Ravi Kerala Varma, Kulasekhara Perumal, Raja of Venad. Succeeded as Trippappur Mutta Tiruvadi and as ruler of Venad 1504. He d. 1528.

1528 – 15xx      Sri Vira Muttavar Sankaranarayana Venrumankonda Bhutalavira Udaya Martanda Varma Raja Jetunganadu Mutta Tiruvadi. Succeeded

on the death of his maternal uncle as 
Trippappur Mutta Tiruvadi 1528. He conquered most of Tirunelvelly

from the Pandyas
and assumed the title of 
Venrumankonda Bhutalavira in commemoration of that victory. The

Vijayanagar  generalissimo, Salakaraja Chinna Tirumalayyadeva

subsequently defeated him in battle near  Tamraparni 1535.

Forced to surrender all the Pandya     territories that he had   
previously won, and reduced to the position

of a vassal of the Vijayanagar Empire. 
  Fl 685 ME, 688 ME, 707 ME and 722 ME. m.

Cholakulavalli, a princess from the Chola dynasty. He 
d. 1560.

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15xx – 1544      Raja Sri Aditya Varman, Raja of Venad. He d. January 1544.
1544 – 1554      Raja Sri Martanda Varma, Raja of Venad. From the Chiravay princely . Succeeded as ruler of Venad and installed on the same day at Vilavur Madom, Attur, Kulkulam, 6th January 1544.

In 1566 A.D. the foundation was laid for the Gopuram (pagoda) over the main eastern entrance.

1554 – 1575      Raja Sri Aditya Varma, Raja of Venad. From Vanchi. Ascended the gadi, at the Tiruvitancode Temple, Kulkulam, 9th March 1554. He d. at Keralapuram Palace, Attur, Kalkulam, 25th March 1575.
1575 – 1577      Raja Sri Ravi Varma, Kulasekhara Perumal, Raja of Venad. Succeeded and installed on the same day at Attur, 25th March 1575. Installed at the Tiruvattar Shrine, 3rd June 1575.  He d. at Keralapuram Palace, Attur, Kalkulam, 19th January 1577, having adopted a princess and a prince from the Attingal Royal Family into the Chiravay Swarupam 1575, including:1) Prince Cheriya Rama Varma, of Manalikkara, in Kalkulam, a nephew of the Trippappur Mutta Tiruvadi.1) Princess ...
1577 – 1578      interregnum?
1578 – 1592      Raja Sri Martanda Varma, Raja of Venad. Assumed the headship of the Chiravay Swarupam as Chiravay Mutta Tiruvadi 18th November

1578. Ascended the gadi as ruler of Venad, 19th November 1578. Assumed the headship of the Trippappur Swarupam as Trippappur Mutta Tiruvadi 1587 and formally installed as such at the Trippappur Mahadevar Temple, 26th October 1588. He d. June 1592, having adopted three princes into the Venad family.

Trippappur Mahadeva Temple

Featured Image

This historic temple has a prominent place in the religious map of Kerala. The primary deity is of 'Lord Siva'. The mythical link to the Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple is behind the popularity of the place located near the Technopark Campus. According to the local opinion, the feet of the deity of Lord Vishnu at the Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple extends to this temple at Kazhakoottam. Also historically relevant is the unification of Saiva and Vaishnava traditions which is apparent at this site which has Lord Siva and Vishnu co-existing. Trippappur Mahadeva Temple has gained considerable attention among tourist circles and is visited by travelers from all over the country and abroad.

1592 – 1609      Raja Sri Vira Ravi Ravi Varma [Kettai Tirunal], Kulasekhara Perumal, Raja of Venad, son of Rani Umayammai. A prince of from the Kilapperur Illam of the Trippappur Swarupam. Succeeded as ruler of Venad and ascended the gadi, 19th June 1592. Assumed the headship of the Trippappur Swarupam as Trippappur Mutta Tiruvadi in 1605. He d. at Toniman Palace, Tiruvattar, 30th March 1609.
1609 – 1610      Raja Sri Rama Varma, Raja of Venad. From Iraniel (the traditional appanage of the Heir Apparent). Adopted into the Chiravay Swaruppam by Raja Sri Martanda Varma, at the Kulittura Palace, April 1579. Succeeded on the death of his adoptive brother, as ruler of Venad, 30th March 1609. He d. eleven months later, at the Karuppu Palace, Trivandrum, 28th February 1610.
1610                 Raja Sri Aditya Varma, Raja of Venad. Adopted into the Chiravay Swaruppam by Raja Sri Martanda Varma, at the Kulittura Palace, April 1579. Succeeded on the death of his adoptive brother as ruler of Venad, 28th February 1610. He d. at the Pullikkottu Palace, Trivandrum, 13th May 1610.
1610                 Raja Sri Ilaya Rama Varma, Raja of Venad. From the Manalikkara branch of the family in Kalkulam. Succeeded 13th May 1610. He d. at the Tikkurichi Palace, Kalkulam, 6th September 1610.
1610 – 1662         Raja Sri Vira Ravi Varma [Revati Tirunal], Kulasekhara Perumal, Raja of Venad. Succeeded on the death of his adoptive uncle as head of the Trippappur Swarupam as Trippappur Mutta Tiruvadi and as ruler of Venad, 6th September 1610 (relinquished 1620?). Assumed the headship of the Chiravay Swarupam as Chiravay Mutta Tiruvadi 1628 (relinquished 1647). He went on pilgrimage to Rawamswaram in 1620. Faced with a contest for the throne throughout his reign. Adopted into the Pokam Tavazhi Senior branch by its Head Vira Kerala Varma Moolam Tirunal, at Pullikottu Palace, Trivandrum, January 1622. Adopted into Kunnummel Elayadam Swarupam (Kottarakkara) by Vira Kerala Varma Pooyam Tirunal, at Karuppu Palace, Trivandrum, July 1623. He d. at the Sri Padam Palace, Trivandrum, 11th August 1662 .
Copyright© Christopher Buyers
1662 – 1671      Raja Sri Rama Varma, Raja of Venad, eldest son of Princess Lakshmi Amma Pantarattil [Lakshmi Nambirattiyar Ammai], from the Vellarapalli Kovilakam of Cochin Royal Family. Adopted by the Senior Rani of Attingal, Pooram Tirunal, at the Attingal Palace,  June 1630. Succeeded 1651 or 827ME. Succeeded on the death of his uncle, 11th August 1662. Assumed the Headship of Jayatunganad (Quilon) 1667. He d. at the Kalkulam Fort Palace, 13th September 1671.
1671 – 1677      Raja Sri Aditya Varma, Raja of Venad, eldest son of Princess Lakshmi Amma Pantarattil [Lakshmi Nambirattiyar Ammai], from the Vellarapalli Kovilakam of Cochin Royal Family. Adopted by the Senior Rani of Attingal, Pooram Tirunal, at the Attingal Palace, June 1630. Succeeded on the death of his elder brother, 13th September 1671. Opposed by the pillamar, who conspired to burn the palace and cause him to flee the capital. He was k. (poisoned by the Yogakkars) at the Darbhakkulangara Palace, Kalkulam, between 28th January/25th February 1677.

1677 – 1678      Raja Sri Ramaraja Ravi Varma, Raja of Venad (first time) – see below
1678 – 1681      Raja Sri Kerala Varma, Raja of Venad, elder son of the Princess of Nedumangadu, of the Perakat Tavazhi, educ. privately. Succeeded as Prince of Nedumangadu on the death of his uncle. Adopted into the Kyamkulam branch of the Cheraway Swarupam, 1677. He claimed that his mother had been adopted into the Trippappur Swarupam of the Venad Royal House, at the same time as his uncle, by Raja Ravi Varma in 1621. Consequently, declared the adoption of 1671 as invalid and claimed the throne for himself. He then joined forces with the discontented pillamars, defeated Rani Ummayamma Aswathi Tirunal in late 1677 and opened negotiations with her mother. The old Rani Makayiram Tirunal having expired before the negotiations were complete, he seized the Royal regalia and proclaimed himself ruler in 1678. Defeated and expelled from Trivandrum in 1681 by Prince Kerala Varma, the Second Tampuran of Iranyal. He subsequently made peace with Rani Ummayamma but failed to secure recognition as Second Tampuran of Venad. He d. 1693.
1677-1678 and 1681-1704 H.H. Maharaj Raja Ramaraja Ravi Varma [Kartika Tirunal], Samgramadhira Kulasekhara, Raja of Venad. b. 1668, educ. privately. Adopted from the Vellarapalli Kovilakam of the Cochin Royal family by the Junior Rani of Attingal, Aswathi Tirunal, in 1671. Thereby excluding the collateral branches of the family, including the Elayadathu Swarupam of Kottarakara, Peraka Thavazhi of Nedumangadu and the Quilon branch. Succeeded on the death of his uncle, Raja Aditya Varma, 1677. Installed at Padnabhapuram, 1678. Reigned under the regency of his mother until he came of age and was invested with full ruling powers, 1684.

In 1686 A.D. the Temple was almost fully destroyed in a major fire accident. Work on the re- construction of the Temple was started only in 1724.

 The pillamars refused to acknowledge his succession and withheld their payments of tribute, causing a severe financial crisisThe Padmanabhaswami Temple had to be closed and the inability to forward tribute to the ruler of Madurai resulted in invasion and pillage. His mother consequently assumed the regency in spite of her own mother, took measures to re-open the temple, forced the pillamar to pay homage and secured the installation of her son as the Kulasekhara Perumal. He fled to Varkalai with his mother after her defeat by the Prince of Nedumangadu in late 1677,
remaining there when deposed by him in 1678. Restored by his half-brother, the Second Tampuran of Iranyal in 1681. Reigned under the Co-Regency of his adoptive mother and adoptive half-brother until he came of age and was invested with full ruling powers, 1684. He later turned over the administration to the Second Prince in 1695 and after his death to his adoptive mother in 1696. Resumed full control over state affairs when she died in February 1697. The remainder of his reign witnessed a failure to reconcile differences with either the pillamars or the ruler of Madurai, the state being plundered by both whenever they pleased. He d. at Padmanabhapuram Palace, Thukalai, 1704 (succ. by his adopted brother). ).
1704 – 1705      H.H. Maharaj Raja Ramaraja Aditya Varma, Raja of Venad (first time) – see below.



1705 – 1707      H.H. Maharaj Raja Ramaraja Unni Kerala Varma III, Kulasekhara Perumal, Raja of Venad, younger son of the Princess of Nedumangadu, of the Perakat Tavazhi, educ. privately. Succeeded on the death of his elder brother as Prince of Nedumangadu and Kayamkulam, 1693. Proclaimed as ruler of Venad by the pillamar in February 1705, after they ignored the rights of Prince Aditya Varma following the death of his brother in 1704. He was k. in battle with his nephew, the Prince of Kayamkulam, December 1707.
1707 – 1711      H.H. Maharaj Raja Ramaraja ..., Kulasekhara Perumal, Raja of Venad, son of the Princess of Nedumangadul, educ. privately. He succeeded his maternal uncle as Prince of Nedumangudu in December 1707, thereby becoming the senior muppu of all three swarupam and thus proclaimed himself as Kulasekhara Perumal. Supported by the ruler of Madurai and the larger portion of the pillamarConcluded peace with Aditya Varma in January 1711, when he received recognition as ruler with Aditya Varma as Heir Apparent. He d. at Trivandrum, 24th May 1711.
1704-1705 & 1711–1721 H.H. Maharaj Raja Ramaraja Aditya Varma, Raja of Venad, second son of of Ittammar Raja of Beypore Thattarikovilakam, of the Kolathundu Royal House, by his wife, a princess of from the Kolathunad Royal House, educ. privately. Adopted by the Rani Regent Umayamma of Attingal, 1696. Succeeded on the death of his elder brother, 1704. Ignored by the pillamar, who recognised the Prince of Nedumangadu ruler in his stead in February 1705. Allied himself with the Rani of Karungappali and set about recovering his throne. Settled at Kalkulam, from whence he opposed the prince of Nedumangadu by making alliances with the Dutch and the exiled princes of the Laccadives, Mammali Kitavus and Kunju Koyamu. He then fell-out with the latter and concluded a truce with the pillamarwho abandoned the Nedumangadul prince in his favour in December 1708. Fled to Quilon in March 1709. Concluded peace with the Nedumangadul prince in January 1711, wherin the latter received full recognition as ruler and Aditya Varma became his Heir Apparent or Elaya Raja. Succeeded as ruler on his death, 24th May 1711. He d(poisoned by the eight Nair lords?) at he Darpakulangara Palace Padmanabhapuram, Thukalai, early February 1721 (succ. by his full brother), having had issue, a daughter:
1) Srimathi Kalyanipilla Kochamma. m. Ravi Varma, of Kayamkulam.

1721 – 1729      H.H. Maharaj Raja Ramaraja Rama Varma, Raja of Venad, third son of Ittammar Raja of Beypore Thattarikovilakam, of the Kolathundu Royal House, by his wife, a princess of from the Kolathunad Royal House, educ. privately. Appointed as Heir Apparent and invested with the title of Elaya Raja, March 1713. Succeeded to Venad on the death of his elder brother in early February 1721. Assumed the headship of Trippappur Swarupam at Tiruvattar Palace, 1st Panguny 896 ME. Although he continued the struggle against the collateral houses and the pillamar, he secured a signal victory against the Madurai ruler at Chiwandaram, 26th March 1723. Concluded a Treaty of Alliance with the HEIC(east india company) on 15th August 1723, in which he gave them rights to avenge the Attingal massacre and their help in hiring Maravar cavalry from the Coromandel coast. He d. from smallpox, at Trivandrum, 27th January (or 9th February) 1729

In 1728 A.D. propitiatory ceremonies, connected with the serious fire of 1686, were conducted.

1729                 H.H. Maharaj Raja Ramaraja Sri Rama Varma, Raja of Venad, elder son of Rani Kartika Tirunal, Senior Rani of Attingal, and a Koil Tampuran of Kilimanur educ. privately. Adopted into the Karunagappali branch of the Cheraway Swarupum in 1715, when he succeeded to the headship of that house and was styled Prince of Neyyatinkara. Installed as Heir Apparent with the title of Elaya Raja, by his uncle, January 1722. Voluntarily accepted demotion to third prince, following the adoption of the Tellicherri prince later that same year. Succeeded as ruler following that prince’s sudden death on 28th February 1729. m. at Nagercoil, Kittinathal Ammachi Panapillai Amma Srimathi Abiramapilla Kochamma, née Abhirami, a former devadasi or temple dancer ennobled just prior to her marriage, daughter of Krishnan Kochu Kumara Pillai, a Bengali or Tamil gentleman from outside Travancore. He d. from smallpox, at Kalkulam, 30th August 1729, having had issue, two sons and a daughter*:

These children were thought to be the children of Rama Varma (r 1721-1729) but a note from their uncle Martanda Varma to Paliyath Achan dated 23 March 1742; ARA, VOC 2564, fol. 2688vo reads “Since the deaths of my predecessors Aditya and Rama Varma and our brother, the Desingadu, the Tambi, son of our deceased brother, the Muthaliyar and the madumbimar united against me and committed several hostilities. See Mark de Lannoy, The Kulasekhara Perumals of Travancore: History and State Formation in Travancore from 1671 to 1758. Research School CNWS, Leiden, The Netherlands, 1997, p45.
Fifth Makaram 925ME, 19th or 20th January 1750AD, stood witness to the act of a sublime dedication and the ultimate offering possible for a crowned head – the Thrippadi Danam. After the completion of certain religious ceremonies Maharaja Anizham Thirunal Marthanda Varma arrived in the Temple along with the male family members, his trusted Diwan and other officials.

In presence of the Swamiyar, members of the Yogam and Brahmins the Maharaja submitted to Sree Padmanabha Prajapati, his entire State of Travancore along with his total right on it thereof by placing the Crown, the royal umbrella, the twin white Chauries (fans), the Manikandha – which were all symbols of royalty, along with some thulasi leaves on the Mandapam. Last but most significant, he placed his famous sword (the unquestioned insignia of sovereign authority which the King valued the most and which had lashed its unleashed velour in countless battle fields) in the steps of the Ottakkal Mandapam.

Even before this, that the male members of the royal family, at the age of one, ware laid on the Ottakkal mandapam and surrendered to Sree Padmanabhaswamy as His own, gaining the supreme title ‘Sree Padmanabha Dasa’.
In 1758, during the reign of Sree Karthika Thirunal Rama Varma, the fabulous Kulasekhara Mandapam was build. It is a marvelous and fantastic architectural work on stone. It is also known as Aayiramkal Mandapam and Sapthaswara Mandapam. It is supported by 28 balustrades of pillars. The pillars on the four corners can produce musical notes when taped.

It was in the year 1729 that the great ruler Marthanda Varma became the king of Travancore. He took the steps to renovate the Temple. In 1730 the idol was again moved to ‘Balalaya’ prior to the renovation and reconstruction of the sanctum sanctorum. It took two years for completion. The old wooden idol was replaced by the one that we see today. Made of highly complex amalgam known as Katusarkarayogam, it contains 12008 Salagrams within it. Most of what is seen today within the walls of the temple were constructed. It is recorded that 4000 sculptors, 6000 labourers and 100 elephants worked for a period of 6 months to finish the construction of the sreebalippura (the oblong corridor). This magnificent rectangular corridor built of solid stones protects the Deities during seeveli on rainy days. The gopuram for which the foundation had been laid in 1566, was built during this period. Similarly the flag-staff in front of the main shrine was also erected at this time. Teak wood of required size was brought from the forest for this purpose and transported to the Temple in such a way that no part of the wood touched the ground. The pole was then covered completely with gold sheets. The renovation of the Temple tank, the Padmatheertham, including the flight steps and its completion in the form we see it today was also undertaken during this great ruler’s time.

1729 - 1758  H.H. Maharaj Raja Ramaraja Sri Padmanabha Dasa Vanchipala Valia Martanda Varma I [Anizham Tirunal], Kulasekhara Perumal, Raja of Travancore. b. at Iranyal, 1705, as Prince Vira Bala Martanda Varma, younger son of Rani Kartika Tirunal, Senior Rani of Attingal, and a Koil Tampuran of Kilimanur educ. privately. Appointed as Third Prince of Venad by his uncle, January 1722. Voluntarily accepted demotion to third prince, following the adoption of the Tellicherri prince later that same year. Succeeded on the death of his elder brother as Trippappur Mutta Tiruvadi of the Trippapur Swarupam and Kilapperur Illam and ruler of Travancore, 30th August 1729.

Ascended the gadi, at the Padmanabhapuram Palace, Thukalai, 1st October 1729. Opposed by the sons of his uncle, who conspired with eight Nair chiefs in an attempt to oust him from the throne, forcing him from the capital. A great warrior and astute politician, he formed a new army, defeated his cousins and began the unification of the principalities and expansion of the kingdom. He achieved a spectacular victory against the Dutch in 1741, then appointed Eustace De Lennoy, the defeated Dutch naval captain 

 Driving all his enemies before him, he annexed one principality after another until his forces advanced up to the borders of Cochin in 1746. He permanently removed his capital to Trivandrum in 1745, where he restored and beautified the ancient temples. Surrendered his kingdom to the family deity Sri Anantha Padmanabhan on 3rd January 1750, thenceforward adopted the title of Sri Padmnabha Dasa Vanchipala. Revered as the founder of modern Travancore (Thiruvithamkor).

Kingdom of Travancore
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Marthanda Varma
‡ Regent Queens

                                           Tippu Sultan, 1792

1758 - 1798 H.H. Maharaj Raja Ramaraja Sri Padmanabha Dasa  Vanchipala Rama Varma II [Kartika Tirunal] Dharmaraja, Kulasekhara Perumal, Kiritapati Manney Sultan Bahadur, Shamsher Jang, Raja of Travancore. b. 1724, as Prince Vanchi Bala Martanda Rama Varma, elder son of Rani Parbathi Bayi, Senior Rani of Attingal, by her husband, M.R.Ry. Sri Kerala Varma Avargal, Koil Tampuran of Kilimanur, educ. privately. Succeeded on the death of his uncle as adhinam of the Trippappur Swarupam and as ruler of Travancore, 7th July 1758. Attacked by Tipu Sultan in 1790, the Raja withstood the invasion for six months, defeated Tipu twice then appealed to the British for assistance. Signed a Treaty of friendship and protection with the HEIC, 17th November 1795. Granted the hereditary titles of Manney Sultan, Maharaj Raja Ramaraja Bahadur, and Shamsher Jang, in reward for his services against Tippu Sultan.

Removed his capital from Padmanabhapuram to Tiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum) in 1795

In 1820 a very big mural mirroring the Ananthasayanam, which is termed as the biggest in the temple murals of Kerala, was drawn during the period of Rani Goury Parvathi Bayi.


{The 35 Naads (Principalities) in Malabar were: Kottayam, KadathanadKurumbranad, Tamarasseri-Wynad, North Parappanad, South Parappanad, Valluvanad, Vadamalapuram, Tenmalapuram, Kolathunad (All ruled by Samanta Kshatriyas); Polanad, Payyanad, Ramanad, Cheranad, Nedunganad, Naduvattam, Kuttanad, Chavakkad, Chetwai, Eranad, Neeleswaram, Konad, Kodikkunninad, Vettattnad, Kakkad, Beypore, Talapilli, Chirakkal, Kumbala, Kollamkode, Punnathur (All ruled by Samanthan Nairs); Kavalapara, Kurangott, Kuthiravattath, Payyurmala & Pulavai (All ruled by Moopil Nayars).}



[ means an insult] FROM a LEFTIST]



Shop owner beaten up over ''Nokku coolie' - The New Indian ...
Nov 21, 2013 - According to reports, CITU workers worked only till 8 pm, and in certain cases when the stock came after that, they exacted 'nokku coolie'.

No more 'Nokku Coolie' - The New Indian Express
Jun 12, 2010 - PALAKKAD: The head load workers, who were being given 'nokku coolie' (looking charges) for the last many days at the rate of Rs 300 a day

Nokku Coolie - “We don’t Work, but you still pay”

Bribery always existed in the Indian system (It is actually an universal phenomenon). We have to bribe people at different levels to get our work done or to get our deal across the table. We have accepted it into our system. Nowadays a new practice has started in Kerala under the name “Nokku Coolie”. This is a practice where the worker unions charge you labor costs without doing the work. I had recently come across this practice in an article (May 6-12 Outlook Magazine) where the head-load workers charged the Vikram Sarabhai Space Research Organization for the machinery that was brought in. Machinery that would weigh in tons and cannot even carried by the laborer.
Initially Nokku Coolie was considered as a sort of compensation for the opportunity lost due to automation coming in, but now it is a daily practice in Kerala. It was only recently that the government got concerned with this ludicrous practice. I have read a blog by SR Nair where he praises the beauty of this practice and calls it smart work . But I somehow feel that this practice will eventually curtail the growth of the state (No offence to SR Nair, its his view, and his article is well crafted). Many cashew-processing companies have already shifted their operations from Kerala to Tamil Nadu where the wage levels are low. In one of the case, the government had an overhead cost of Rs.3000 per laborer for installing turbines, each weighing 80 tons with the help of a crane in a windmill farm. The above two examples tells us the negative impact of such a practice. All this leads us to one question. What is the exact purpose of labor unions? Are they doing the right thing by charging Nokku Coolie?
Labor unions existed as early as the eighteenth century with their objective as protecting their members by providing them various benefits. Benefits like better wages, working environment, working hours, medical insurance etc. And it has been observed over the years that an union member gets a higher pay then his contemporary non union member because of the political strength that vests in the hands of the unions. For e.g. A Canadian Labour Union member earns $5 more per hour ( ).
With this background on the purpose of labor unions, let us look into the second question. Are they doing the right thing? Labour unions have always been accused of benefiting the inside workers when compared to the unemployed. A second criticism is that labor unions play a monopoly and has the same negative effects as any other monopolies I.e. raising prices and decreasing efficiency. The Nokku Coolie is clearly an example of the second case. The monopoly that is created by the worker unions in Kerala has lead to increase in operations cost, in turn increasing the production cost and leading to a decrease in efficiency. As it is having a negative effect on the economy, I shall hold that Nokku Coolie isn’t the correct practice.
And now the inevitable question arises. What is the alternate source of income for these workers? And this is where we reach a dead lock. If I knew the solution or indeed if the government knew the immediate solution, Nokku Coolie would have never existed. A long term solution might be that whenever there are new manual labor intensive jobs available, the government might give these people a priority on hiring. But, will any worker be willing to leave this haven of “no work, but get paid”. I leave this task of convincing people and get them working to Pinarayi (CPI-M leader) and the CM of Kerala, V.S. Achuthanandan.



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    Jan 29, 2010 - The cruelties which Tipu Sultan committed in Coorg, has no parallel in history. On one occasion, he forcibly converted over ten thousand ...



Maharani Sethu Lakshmi Bayi -OF TRAVANCORE[NOW KERALA](1924)

In 1925 the Maharani was visited by Mahatma Gandhi. Their meeting resulted in a royal proclamation by which all the public roads and streets in Travancore were thrown open to all Hindus irrespective of caste. Mahatma Gandhi called it a "bedrock of freedom" in his Young India (26 March 1925) magazine while describing the Maharani thus:
My visit to Her Highness was an agreeable surprise for me. Instead of being ushered into the presence of an over decorated woman sporting diamond pendants and necklaces, I found myself in the presence of a modest young woman who relied not upon jewels or gaudy dresses for beauty but on her own naturally well formed features and exactness of manners. Her room was as plainly furnished as she was dressed. Her severe simplicity became an object of my envy. She seemed to me an object lesson for many a prince and many a millionaire whose loud ornamentation, ugly looking diamonds, rings and studs and still more loud and almost vulgar furniture offend the taste and present a terrible and sad contrast between them and the masses from whom they derive their wealth.

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  • ===================================

    The old capital of the Hoysala Ballalas at Dvarasamudra was taken in 1310, and Malik Kafur went to the Malabar Coast where he erected a mosque, and afterwards returned to his master with enormous booty (A sketch of the dynasties of Southern India Robert Sewell-1883 . 

    Now is that correct? To determine the answer you have to understand the differences between the usages M’aabar & Malabar signifying two geographically different areas of South India, as mentioned in history. One of them is lost in modern parlance, while the other will soon be forgotten in today’s integrated Kerala save in the minds of some from an older generation or those studying history. These two words are known to some historians, but the occasional reader is definite to get confused. In reality these are two different parts of South India and both names originated from Arabic terms used to signify the region they traded with. Basically both names signify ‘passage’ or ‘the crossing’. In the early medieval, the South Coromandel area was synonymous with the kingdom of M’aabar (Incidentally, the word Coromandel that we use came from Cholamandalam). The word M’aabar was used often by Arab writers and then when it became a kingdom post invasion it came to limelight, and thereafter got confused with Malabar after the English arrived.

    Ma’bar as a kingdom appears in history books around the 13th century and is defined as the area eastwards from Cape Comorin (Abdulfeda) to Nellore. It was however mentioned as a trading area even before that. The western region of Melibar (Menibar) which we know as today’s Malabar, is defined to be the area between Mt Deli (Cannanore) and Cape Comorin. Of the origins of the usage Malabar to depict the west Coast of Kerala, I will not get into much detail at this moment, and we have covered that before.

    During the later parts of the 17th or 18th century, the definitions between these two words got blurred and some English writers like Sewell mixed up the locales. One of the mentions that changed the entire course of history of a region, if it had really been accepted would be the mythical invasion of Malabar by Malik Kafur. It never happened, for Kafur never crossed the Western Ghats. On the contrary, as some books mention, the Kulashkhara Varma of the Chera dynasty, supporting the Pandyas drove Kafur and his minions out of Madurai during his first foray. This is probably a confusion as well, which we will see shortly.

    Then there is another rclaim that needs further study - this mention in the Kulashekara dynasty entry in Wikipedia - The Various sub-castes of Bunts (community) such as Nayara, Menava, Kuruba and Samantha established Matriarchal dynasties in Kerala only after 1310 when Malik Kafur invaded Kerala. The first ever mention of Nairs is at Thrikodithanam mentions a Chennan Nair who was a Drummer migrated from Tulunadu. But more on this some other day, for now we will focus on Malik Kafur.

    A number of articles mentions about the southerly invasion by Malik Kafur, the 1000 Dinar slave and eunuch at the command of Alaudin Khilji, the subsequent sacking of Malabar and his return up North with huge amounts of booty. Now was that right?

    In order to clear this confusion from the records, let us take a real look at the movements of Malik Kafur, for the story of the man is pretty interesting and so is the story of the Sultanate of M’aabar which lasted less than 50 years. The best descriptions of the Sultanate can be obtained from a fine book written by Mehrdad Shokoohy titled Muslim Architecture of South India. I will get to these parts and the empire of M’aabar another day while covering the Coromandel and later the Chinese traders , but will presently introduce it as the area east of Cape Comorin (Kumhuri) and its many ports. This area and upto Madurai later on became the Sultanate of M’aabar.

    Somewhere around the 13th century (Nov 1310) this area came under the direct notice of the Delhi Sultans, possibly because of the export of pearls and other trade related activities and an urgent summons to mediate in a family quarrel. Sundara Pandya of Madurai requested the support of Alauddin Khilji over a matter of accession and Ulugh Khan was deputed to support the king. But he died before he could raise the forces, and his place was taken by the vice regent Malik Kafur (white camphor) or Kafur Hazar Dinari.

    The story of M’aabar is somewhat similar to what happened when the Palghat Appan invited Hyder Ali, who was hanging round Dindigul. Let me borrow words from Tamil Tribune.

    King Maravarman Kulasekhara Pandyan (1268 - 1310) had two sons Jatavarman Sundara Pandyan and Jatavarman Veera Pandyan. The elder son, Sundara Pandyan, was by the king's wife and the younger, Veera Pandyan, was by a mistress. Contrary to tradition, the king proclaimed that the younger son would succeed him. This enraged Sundara Pandyan. He killed the father and became king in 1310. Some local chieftains in the kingdom swore allegiance to the younger brother Veera Pandian and a civil war broke out. Sundara Pandyan was defeated and he fled the country. He sought help from the far off northern ruler Sultan Ala-ud-din Khilji who was ruling much of northern India from Delhi. At that time, his army under General Malik Kafur was in the south at Dvarasamudra (far to the north of Tamil Nadu). Khilji agreed to help Sundara Pandyan and ordered Malik Kafur's army to march to Tamil Nadu. With Sundara Pandyan's assistance, this Muslim army from the north entered Tamil Nadu in 1311.

    Kafur and his troops created mayhem in the area for a full year, looting and pillaging, finally carrying an immense treasure on 312 elephants, 20000 horses and 10 crore gold coins. Since then the place has been mentioned by Ibn Batuta as well (who married a girl from the local rulers family), and we hear about the many battles of the M’aabar rulers with local kings & chieftains. By the 15th century the sultanate was no more. Prior to the 14th century, this was the area where the much interaction with the Chinese took place. But it is important to note that M’aabar was the place where the Arab ships delivered horses though we hear of smaller deliveries to the Malabar coasts. The reasoning should be that Malabar did not need horses due to the nature of the terrain and Arabian horses did not quite fit in, but were more important for the plains of the East and from where they were traded up north to the Deccan and Delhi kings. If you recall I wrote about the famous horse trader of Kayalpatanam who converted the Paravas during the later Portuguese reign as well. Anyway one other reason why the Delhi Sultans wanted a foothold in the south was to control the horse trade as horses were needed for any war campaign.

    So who was Malik Kafur? Let us first look at what is mentioned in most books – Borrowing from Wikipedia, Malik Kafur (1296 - 1316),or "Chand Ram" as his name was supposedly ,was a eunuch slave who became a head general in the army of Alauddin Khilji, ruler of the Delhi sultanate from 1296 to 1316 AD. He was originally seized by Alauddin's army after the army conquered the city of Khambhat (Cambay). Alauddin Khilji fell in love with the effeminate beauty of Malik Kafur, castrated and converted him to Islam. He was made malik naib, the senior commander of the army. Another article states thus - In 1297 AD Alauddin Khilji set off for conquering Gujarat. The Raja of Gujarat took shelter in Devagiri where Nusrat Khan an Ulugh Khan pursued them and looted. During Alauddin Khalji’s invasion of Gujarat, his generals had brought immense booty from there including Raja Karan’s consort Kamla Devi and the handsome slave Malik Kafur Hazardinari.. The Sultan fell in love with both. In the words of Farishtah, he converted Kamala Devi to Islam and married her, and treating Kafur as a favourite “tied the sacred thread (zunnar) of his love in his own waist.” Shanti Sadiq Ali in the book The African dispersal in the Deccan: from medieval to modern times mentions he was African slave purchased in Baghdad. Abdul Sherif identifies him as an Ethiopian. Chand Ram or African, he went on to create havoc much like Ayas Khan did for Hyder Ali.

    So that was Kafur, the slave and later commander. I will get to his life thereafter a little later, but let us see how historians interpret the story.

    See what German historian Wilhelm von Pochhammer has to say about this in ‘India's road to nationhood: a political history of the subcontinent’ – He reorganizes the history - As the weakest among the Tamil states, Kerala maintained its identity by identifying with the strongest power. After the dissolution of the Chola Empire, Kerala obtained complete independence once again. It was then threatened by a new danger. With the Muslim invasion, the cavalry general Malik Kafur (1310) wanted to plunder Kerala. Kerala however defended itself partly by skilful guerilla warfare and partly by drawing the Muslim general’s attention to the much greater riches in the neighboring territory of the Pandyas. The state although saved from danger, broke up into small segments of which the biggest was ruled by the Zamorin of Calicut. 

    So we have already seen two new definitions to the medieval period of Kerala, one based on the parley of Bunts to Kerala and the second based on the threat of the Khilji Eunuch general.

    Krishnaswami Iyengar in his book Some Contributions of South India to Indian Culture opines thus - In the meanwhile the Mohammadan garrisons left by Malik-Kafur had been dislodged from the Tamil country by the Kerala ruler, Harivarma Kulashekara, who broke out of his mountain frontier and carried his armies successfully as far as Poonamallee, perhaps only to retire, when the Kakatiya general advanced against him.

    This is confirmed by JBP More, who states that Kafur’s first invasion attempt was a failure, but he was immensely successful the second time around. If that were the case, why did Malik Kafur not retaliate during his second and successful raid and attack the Chera king in his domain? Anyway we do not know if he did, probably he did not.

    Malik Kafur did not live very long after the plunder. As Dunning explains - On the 4th Jumada Sani 711 H. (1311) Malik Kafur arrived in Delhi with all this treasure and presented it to the Sultan Ala-ud-Din. But a curse seemed to attach to all the gold and jewels taken from the Hindoo idolaters, and in the same way as the Warangal treasure tempted Ala-ud-Din to murder his uncle Jelal-ud-Din, so now the same temptation brought upon him the same fate from the hands of Malik Kafur. In 1317 Ala-ud-Din died, his death having been hastened(poisoned), it is said, by Malik Kafur, who at once seized the throne. He put out the eyes of two of Ala-ud-Din's sons, "by cutting them from their sockets with a razor, like slices of melon," and confined another (Mubarak Khan), intending him for the same fate. Before, however, he could do this, retribution overtook Malik Kafur himself. A conspiracy was formed amongst some of the nobles, who entered the palace at night and killed him when he was asleep. This being done, Mubarak Khan was placed upon the throne and assumed the title of Sultan Kutb-ud-Din (1317).

    Ziauddin Barani (translation by S Kidwai) says thus – In those last 4-5 years of Alauddin Khilji’s life, the sultan was losing his memory & senses; he had fallen deeply and madly in love with Malik Naib. He had entrusted his responsibilities to the useless, ingratiate sodomite Kafur. In a scornful obituary to Kafur, Barani says – This ignorant man did not know that to be castrated, to be addicted to the vice of being sodomised and to be faithless are the worst vices. He did not know the necessities and rules of Kingship require a person to be exceptional, independent, fearless and strong. … That was Malik Kafur..

    But Malik Kafur is remembered in history for something else as well; he looted and brought to Delhi the great diamond taken from Rudradeva, identified by some with the famous Koh-i-Nur. Of that I will talk at length soon.

    So that was the story of Kafur and his foray into M’aabar. The story got tainted in time, when M’aabar vanished from the vocabulary and further got confused with Malabar. Regretfully many works of history and even text books still mention that Malik Kafur plundered Malabar, which as you saw from this study is after all, a misconception..


    Mehrdad Shokoohy - Muslim architecture of South India
    Tarikh-i ‘Alai or Khazainu-l Futuh by Amir Khusru
    Dhow Cultures and the Indian Ocean - Abdul Sheriff
    The history of India from the earliest ages: Mussulman rule - James Talboys Wheeler
    A history of the Deccan, Volume 1- James Dunning Baker Gribble, Mary Gribble Pendlebury


    There is an interesting but false legend about Kafur which is heard in old men’s tales. It is a fabrication and is mentioned below only for the fun of it….

    In 1312 AD, Malik Kafur invaded Devagiri in Deccan for the second time and captured two beautiful daughters of King Ramadeva. Malik Kafur sent those two young ladies to Alauddin Khalji in Delhi along with other loot. Alauddin, who had natural weakness for beautiful ladies irrespective of their marital status, invited them to join his royal harem with all dignity. The elder girl replied that both of them were not fit for emperor as Malik Kafur had already enjoyed them. In anger Alauddin forgot that Malik Kafur was a Eunuch and cannot enjoy girls normally. He ordered an immediate arrest of Malik Kafur and got him sent to Delhi after packing him in a sack made of cow skin. Alauddin knew that during the fortnight’s journey from Devagiri to Delhi, the cow skin would shrink gradually in hot and humid climate killing Malik Kafur by suffocating him slowly. After a fortnight the cow skin sack containing Malik Kafur’s dead body reached Alauddin. Alauddin opened the sack in presence of those two ladies. On seeing the dead body, one of the girls told him that emperor should have checked genuineness of their allegation before giving the death order. Alauddin became furious and asked why they made false allegation against Malik Kafur. They replied that they wanted to take revenge on Malik Kafur who had destroyed their country. Source rajendracholan – Ponniyinselvam forum

    This entry was posted on Saturday, August 20, 2011 at Saturday, August 20, 2011 and is filed under  . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .

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    Adi Shankara
    Raja Ravi Varma - Sankaracharya.jpg
    Adi Shankara with Disciples, by Raja Ravi Varma (1904)
    788 CE[1]
    KaladiChera Kingdom
    present day Kerala, India
    Died820 CE[1]
    KedarnathPala Empire
    present day Uttarakhand, India
    Titles/honoursExpounded Advaita Vedanta, Hindu Revivalism, FoundedDashanami Sampradaya,Shanmata
    GuruGovinda Bhagavatpada
    PhilosophyAdvaita Vedanta

    Adi Shankara, along with Madhva and Ramanuja, was instrumental in the revival of Hinduism

     for Shankara the Absolute Reality is attributeless and impersonal

    Before Adi sankara revived Hinduism it was mainly Buddhism and Jainism in kerala

    Jainism and Buddhism came to Kerala as early as 200 or 300 AD and flourished till 1000 AD. The arrival of Vedic brahmins to Kerala from 800 AD and the royal patronage they got, resulted in many of these shrines getting converted into Hindu temples. The massive Vadakkumnatha temple
     in the heart of Thrissur city was once a Buddhist temple. The Koodalmanikyam temple in Irinjalakkuda 

    was a Jain temple.


    Kallil Temple Jain Temple, is located atop a small hill, 23 km away from Kalady. It is a 9th century Jain Temple in Kerala is cut from a huge rock

    Simple architecture: The Jain Temple under renovation at Jainimedu in Palakkad . — File photo
    The Jain Temple under renovation at Jainimedu in Palakkad .

     At one time at Jainimedu, there were 400 Jain families, most of them diamond and pearl traders. Thus Jainimedu was known as ‘Manikyapattanam' (Diamond town) and ‘Muthpattanam' (Pearl town). The eastern part of Palakkad town — Chandranagar — was also said to be a Jain settlement.[NOW SURAT IN GUJARAT HAS TAKEN OVER DIAMOND TRADE]


    KERALA INDIA WORLD SPECIAL 1931ല്‍ ശ്രീപദ്മനാഭസ്വാമി ക്ഷേത്രത്തിലെ കല്ലറ തുറന്നപ്പോള്‍

    പഴയ ചരിത്രത്തിന് അന്ത്യംകുറിച്ചും പുതിയ ചരിത്രത്തിന് തുടക്കംകുറിച്ചുമുള്ള നടപടികളാണ് ശ്രീപദ്മനാഭസ്വാമി ക്ഷേത്രത്തില്‍ ഇപ്പോള്‍ അരങ്ങേറിയിരിക്കുന്നത്. നൂറ്റാണ്ട് കഴിയുമ്പോള്‍ ഈ ക്ഷേത്രത്തിന്റെ ആധുനികകാലം എന്ന് വിശേഷിപ്പിക്കുന്നത് ഒരുപക്ഷേ ഇരുപത്തിയൊന്നാം നൂറ്റാണ്ടായിരിക്കും. ഏഴു പോറ്റിമാര്‍ അടങ്ങിയ യോഗം അഥവാ 'സഭ'യും കാര്യപരിപാടികള്‍ തയ്യാറാക്കുന്ന സഭാഞ്ജിതനും വസ്തുക്കള്‍ പരിപാലിച്ചിരുന്ന എട്ടുവീട്ടില്‍ പിള്ളമാരും കൂടിയാണ് മതിലകം രേഖപ്രകാരം ഒരുകാലത്ത് ഈ ക്ഷേത്രം ഭരിച്ചിരുന്നത്.

    സഭയെ 'എട്ടരയോഗം' എന്നാണ് വിളിച്ചിരുന്നത്. പോറ്റിമാരും വേണാട് രാജാവും ചേര്‍ന്നതാണ് സഭയെന്ന് ഒരുവിഭാഗം ചരിത്രകാരന്മാര്‍ പറയുന്നു. എന്നാല്‍ രാജാവിന്റെ തീരുമാനങ്ങള്‍ക്ക് അര വോട്ടിന്റെ വിലയേ ഉണ്ടായിരുന്നുള്ളൂ. ഉദ്യോഗസ്ഥര്‍ ചെയ്യുന്ന തെറ്റായ നടപടികള്‍ക്കുപോലും യോഗം കൂടുമ്പോള്‍ രാജാവ് മാപ്പ് പറയേണ്ടിയിരുന്നുപോല്‍. എന്നാല്‍ ഈ വാദത്തെ എതിര്‍ക്കുന്ന ചരിത്രകാരന്മാരും ഉണ്ട്. അവരുടെ അഭിപ്രായത്തില്‍ 'എട്ടരച'യോഗം ആണ്. അരചന്‍ എന്ന് ഉദ്ദേശിക്കുന്നത് രാജാവിനെയാണ്. നെയ്താശ്ശേരി, അത്തിയറ, മുട്ടവിള, അത്തിയറ (കൊല്ലൂര്‍), കൂവക്കര, കരുവെ, പൊന്‍കുഴി എന്നീ ഇല്ലങ്ങളിലെ പോറ്റിമാരായിരുന്നു എട്ടരയോഗത്തില്‍ ഉണ്ടായിരുന്നതെന്ന് മതിലകം രേഖകളില്‍നിന്നും മനസ്സിലാക്കാം. സ്വാമിയാര്‍ അഥവാ പുഷ്പാഞ്ജലി സ്വാമിയാര്‍ ആണ് ക്ഷേത്രത്തിന്റെ ചടങ്ങുകളുടെ അധിപന്‍. രാജാവ് ആദ്യകാലത്ത് ക്ഷേത്രത്തിന്റെ ദൈനംദിന കാര്യങ്ങളില്‍ ഇടപെടില്ലായിരുന്നു.

    എട്ടരയോഗം ശക്തമായിരുന്നു. യോഗത്തിന്റെ തീരുമാനം രാജാവിനെ അറിയിക്കുന്നത് 'വാരിയം' വഴിയായിരുന്നു. രാജാവും സഭ (യോഗം) യും തമ്മിലുള്ള തര്‍ക്കങ്ങളും ആഭ്യന്തര കലഹങ്ങളും പലപ്പോഴും ക്ഷേത്രത്തിന്റെ പ്രവര്‍ത്തനത്തെ ബാധിച്ചിരുന്നു. എന്നാല്‍ 1729ല്‍ അധികാരത്തില്‍വന്ന അനിഴംതിരുനാള്‍ മാര്‍ത്താണ്ഡവര്‍മ്മയുടെ ഭരണത്തോടെ ശ്രീപദ്മനാഭസ്വാമി ക്ഷേത്രത്തിലെ ഭരണത്തിന്റെ അലകും പിടിയും മാറി. അദ്ദേഹമാണ് ഇന്നത്തെ രൂപത്തില്‍ ക്ഷേത്രം പുതുക്കിപ്പണിതതും പുതിയ ചടങ്ങുകളും മറ്റും ഏര്‍പ്പെടുത്തിയതും. അന്നുമുതല്‍ തുടങ്ങിയ ക്ഷേത്രഭരണത്തിനാണ് ഇപ്പോള്‍ മാറ്റം വന്നിരിക്കുന്നത്. അതേസമയം ക്ഷേത്രച്ചടങ്ങുകള്‍ക്ക് മാറ്റം വരില്ല. കാരണം 'ട്രസ്റ്റി' ഇപ്പോള്‍ രാജകുടുംബസ്ഥാനീയനായ മൂലംതിരുനാള്‍ രാമവര്‍മ്മയാണ്. അദ്ദേഹത്തിന്റെ നേതൃത്വത്തില്‍ ചടങ്ങുകളും ഉത്സവങ്ങളും പതിവുപടി തുടരും.

    മാര്‍ത്താണ്ഡവര്‍മ്മ അധികാരത്തിലെത്തുന്നതിനുമുമ്പുതന്നെ ഈ ക്ഷേത്രത്തില്‍ സ്വര്‍ണ-വജ്ര ആഭരണങ്ങള്‍ ധാരാളം ഉണ്ടായിരുന്നു. മാര്‍ത്താണ്ഡവര്‍മ്മ ആക്രമിച്ച് കീഴ്‌പ്പെടുത്തിയ സമ്പന്നമായ ചെമ്പകശ്ശേരി ഉള്‍പ്പെടെയുള്ള രാജ്യങ്ങളുടെ സ്വത്ത് ടിപ്പുവിന്റെ ആക്രമണത്തെ ഭയന്ന് മലബാറില്‍ നിന്നുവന്ന രാജാക്കന്മാരും പ്രഭുക്കന്മാരും കൊണ്ടുവന്ന സ്വത്ത് വഴിപാട്്, കാണിക്ക എന്നിവ വഴിയും പിഴയായും ലഭിച്ച സ്വത്ത് ഇതെല്ലാം നിലവറകളിലെ ശേഖരങ്ങളില്‍പ്പെടുന്നതായി പറയുന്നു. ഇതുകൂടാതെ രാജാക്കന്മാര്‍ ജനങ്ങളില്‍നിന്ന് പിഴയായും ധാരാളം ഈടാക്കിയിട്ടുണ്ടെന്ന് പറയുന്നുവെങ്കിലും ഇത്ര വലിയ സ്വര്‍ണ-വജ്ര നിക്ഷേപം നല്‍കാനുള്ള സമ്പന്നമായ ജനസമൂഹം അന്നുണ്ടായിരുന്നോ എന്നകാര്യം സംശയമാണ്.

    അനിഴംതിരുനാള്‍ മാര്‍ത്താണ്ഡവര്‍മ്മയ്ക്ക് ശേഷമായിരിക്കാം ഈ ക്ഷേത്രത്തില്‍ ഇത്രവലിയ സമ്പത്തുണ്ടായത്. എന്നാല്‍ ശ്രീപദ്മനാഭസ്വാമി ക്ഷേത്രത്തിലെ 'ഹിരണ്യഗര്‍ഭം' എന്ന ചടങ്ങ് നടത്താന്‍ 1739ല്‍ മാര്‍ത്താണ്ഡവര്‍മ്മ തന്നെ ഡച്ച് മേധാവി വാന്‍ ഇംഹോഫിനോട് പതിനായിരം കഴഞ്ച് സ്വര്‍ണം ആവശ്യപ്പെട്ടതായി രേഖ ഉണ്ട്. ഇത് മാര്‍ത്താണ്ഡവര്‍മ്മ 'തൃപ്പടിദാനം' വഴി രാജ്യം ശ്രീപദ്മനാഭന് സമര്‍പ്പിക്കും മുമ്പുള്ള കാര്യം. മാര്‍ത്താണ്ഡവര്‍മ്മയുടെ അനന്തരവനായിരുന്ന കാര്‍ത്തികതിരുനാള്‍ രാമവര്‍മ്മ അഥവാ ധര്‍മ്മരാജാവ് ഭരിക്കുമ്പോഴാണല്ലോ ടിപ്പുസുല്‍ത്താന്റെ ആക്രമണം മലബാറില്‍ ഉണ്ടായതും തിരുവിതാംകൂര്‍ ഇംഗ്ലീഷുകാരുടെ സഹായം അഭ്യര്‍ഥിച്ചതും. യുദ്ധത്തില്‍ തിരുവിതാംകൂറിനെ സഹായിക്കാനാണ് ഇംഗ്ലീഷ് ഈസ്റ്റ്ഇന്ത്യാ കമ്പനി ശ്രീരംഗ പട്ടണം ആക്രമിച്ചത്.

    ടിപ്പുസുല്‍ത്താന്‍ പരാജയപ്പെട്ടു. എന്നാല്‍ ഈസ്റ്റ്ഇന്ത്യാ കമ്പനിയും തിരുവിതാംകൂറും തമ്മിലുണ്ടാക്കിയ കരാര്‍പ്രകാരം നല്‍കാനുള്ള വന്‍ കപ്പപ്പണം കൊടുക്കാന്‍ നിവൃത്തിയില്ലാതെ മഹാരാജാവ് വിഷമിക്കുന്ന രംഗം പി. ശങ്കുണ്ണി മേനോന്‍ 'തിരുവിതാംകൂര്‍ ചരിത്ര'ത്തില്‍ രേഖപ്പെടുത്തിയിട്ടുണ്ട്. ഒടുവില്‍ ദിവാനായ രാജാ കേശവദാസന്‍ തന്ത്രപൂര്‍വം ഇടപെട്ടാണ് പ്രശ്‌നം രമ്യതയിലാക്കിയത്. ടിപ്പുവിന്റെ ആക്രമണ കാലത്ത് വമ്പിച്ച സ്വത്ത് കാര്‍ത്തികതിരുനാള്‍ രാമവര്‍മ്മയ്ക്ക് എത്തിച്ചിരുന്നുവെങ്കില്‍ കമ്പനിക്ക് കപ്പം കൊടുക്കാന്‍ കഴിയാതെ അദ്ദേഹം വിഷമിച്ചതെന്തിന്? ഇനി വേലുത്തമ്പിദളവയുടെ കാലം എടുക്കാം.

    തമ്പിയും ഇംഗ്ലീഷ് റസിഡന്റ് കേണല്‍ മെക്കാളയുമായി തെറ്റിയത് കപ്പ കുടിശ്ശികയുടെ പേരിലാണല്ലോ? ഇത്രയധികം നിക്ഷേപം അന്ന് ശ്രീപദ്മനാഭന്റെ നിലവറകളിലുണ്ടായിരുന്നുവെങ്കില്‍ അതിന്റെ ഒരംശം എടുത്ത് എന്തുകൊണ്ട് കുടിശ്ശിക തീര്‍ക്കാന്‍ കഴിഞ്ഞില്ലെന്ന ചോദ്യം ഉദിക്കുന്നു. ശ്രീപദ്മനാഭന്റെ സ്വത്ത് ഇത്തരം കാര്യങ്ങള്‍ക്ക് എടുക്കാറില്ലെന്നാണ് ഇതിന് ഉത്തരമായി ചിലര്‍ പറയുന്നത്. എന്നാല്‍ സംഗതി അതാണോ? പലപ്രാവശ്യവും പൊതു ആവശ്യത്തിന് ശ്രീപദ്മനാഭന്റെ ട്രഷറിയില്‍നിന്നും വന്‍തുക സര്‍ക്കാര്‍ കടം വാങ്ങിയതായി രേഖയുണ്ട്.

    ശ്രീപദ്മനാഭസ്വാമി ക്ഷേത്രത്തിലെ നിലവറകളുടെ പേര് ഇന്ന് എ മുതല്‍ എഫ് വരെയുള്ള അക്ഷരങ്ങളിലാണ്. എന്നാല്‍ മഹാഭാരത് കോണ്‍, വേദവ്യാസ കോണ്‍, സരസ്വതി കോണ്‍ എന്നീ പേരുകളിലായിരുന്നു മുമ്പ് നിലവറകള്‍ അറിയപ്പെട്ടിരുന്നത്. അതിനകത്താണ് പൂജാസാധനങ്ങളും ആഭരണങ്ങളും വിലയേറിയ കാഴ്ചവസ്തുക്കളും കാണിക്കകളും സൂക്ഷിച്ചിരുന്നത്. അന്ന് നിലവറകളെ 'കല്ലറ' എന്നാണ് മതിലകം രേഖകളില്‍ രേഖപ്പെടുത്തിയിട്ടുള്ളത്. കൊല്ലവര്‍ഷം 914 (ഇംഗ്ലീഷ് വര്‍ഷം 1739) മുതല്‍ ഈ കല്ലറകളെപ്പറ്റി മതിലകം രേഖയില്‍ പറഞ്ഞിട്ടുണ്ട്. സ്വര്‍ണക്കുടങ്ങളും വെള്ളിപ്പാത്രങ്ങളും മോഷണം പോയതിന്റെയും കുറ്റക്കാര്‍ക്ക് ശിക്ഷ നല്‍കിയതിന്റെയും മറ്റുമുള്ള എ.ഡി. 1904 വരെയുള്ള രേഖ ലഭ്യമാണ്. എന്നാല്‍ കൊല്ലവര്‍ഷം 1107 വൃശ്ചികമാസം (ഇംഗ്ലീഷ് വര്‍ഷം 1931) കല്ലറ തുറന്നതിനെപ്പറ്റി പ്രധാന പത്രങ്ങളിലെല്ലാം വലിയ വാര്‍ത്ത വന്നിരുന്നു.

    ശ്രീചിത്തിരതിരുനാള്‍ ബാലരാമവര്‍മ്മ മഹാരാജാവിന്റെ സാന്നിധ്യത്തില്‍ ദിവാന്‍, അക്കൗണ്ട്‌സ് ഓഫീസര്‍, സര്‍വ്വാധികാര്യക്കാരന്‍, സ്‌പെഷ്യല്‍ ഓഫീസര്‍ എന്നിവരുടെ നേതൃത്വത്തിലാണ് കല്ലറ തുറന്നത്. മതസംബന്ധമായ ചടങ്ങുകള്‍ക്കുേശഷമായിരുന്നു തുറക്കല്‍. അടിയന്തരമായ ആവശ്യങ്ങള്‍ നേരിടാന്‍ ആംബുലന്‍സ് വെളിയില്‍ സജ്ജമാക്കിയിരുന്നു. 2000 കഴഞ്ച് തൂക്കമുള്ള 3000 സ്വര്‍ണക്കുടങ്ങളും വമ്പിച്ച സ്വര്‍ണ-വജ്ര നിക്ഷേപങ്ങളും പിച്ചളയില്‍ത്തീര്‍ത്ത നാലു വണ്ടികളിലുള്ള നാണയങ്ങളും ആറു അറകളുള്ള ചെമ്പ് പത്തായത്തില്‍ തങ്കക്കാശുകളും ഉള്‍െപ്പടെ വന്‍ ശേഖരമാണ് അവിടെ കണ്ടതെന്ന് പത്രങ്ങളില്‍ റിപ്പോര്‍ട്ട് വന്നു. ഈ ശേഖരങ്ങളുടെ കണക്കുകള്‍ എടുത്തുവെന്നാണ് അറിയുന്നത്. ഇപ്പോള്‍ കണ്ടിട്ടുള്ള നിക്ഷേപങ്ങള്‍ ഇതിന്റെ എത്രയോ ഇരട്ടിയാണ്. ഇതിന്റെയെല്ലാം പൂര്‍ണ വിവരം ലഭിച്ചാലേ നിധി വന്നവഴിയും അതിന്റെ ചരിത്രപശ്ചാത്തലവും പഠിക്കാന്‍ കഴിയൂ. അതുകൊണ്ട് നിധി വന്നവഴികളെപ്പറ്റി അറിയാന്‍ ഇനിയും കാത്തിരിക്കേണ്ടിവരും.







    Velu Thambi assumed power as Minister of Power and Commerce after this revolution. His sterling qualities and hard work so impressed the king, that before long, he was made the Dalawa or Prime Minister. During his tenure as Prime Minister in the years 1801-1809, corruption was removed and the kingdom prospered. He undertook several reforms such as the reclamation of fallow land, and construction of roads and canals. Primary education was made compulsory while trade and commerce improved under his rule. But this happy state of affairs was not to last for very long.
    Within a short time he came into conflict with the mighty East India Company, which had been establishing subsidiary alliances with various Indian states. The treaty which Balarama Varma, the King of Travancore had signed with the British reduced the ruler to a mere puppet. Velu Thambi opposed the treaty which stipulated that the king should pay a crippling sum of Rs. 8 lakhs as subsidy, in lieu of the protection offered by the British Company. His suggestion that the amount of subsidy be reduced, as it was beyond the capacity of the Travancore state to pay, provoked the ire of Macaulay, the British Resident at Cochin. Macaulay demanded that the Prime Minister raise more funds by disbanding many Travancore state soldiers and by imposing more taxes. Velu Thambi ignored both the demands He had been viewing with growing anger and resentment the active British interference in the affairs of the state. He instigated the people to turn against the English through written orders to the public officials. This resulted in clashes between the king’s soldiers and Company’s forces.
    Velu Thambi turned to the neighboring kingdoms for support in his mission against the Company. The Prime Minister of the kingdom of Cochin, Govindan Menon, promised him full support as he too was fed up of British interference in matters concerning Cochin. The two planned to attack Fort Cochin, and kill Macaulay, who was staying there. On the night of December 28th, 1808, Govindan Menon led a large body of armed men, and surrounded Macaulay’s residence at the Fort of Cochin. His forces were reinforced by a detachment of soldiers sent by Velu Thambi. Macaulay, though caught unawares by this attack at such an unusual hour, managed to escape through an underground tunnel. He boarded a small boat which rowed him in safety to a British ship. Macaulay fled to Quilon town where British troops had a garrison. A section of the attacking forces followed in their own boats in search of the British Resident but their efforts failed.
    Undaunted by this setback Velu Thambi issued on December 29th 1808 a proclamation known as the Kundara Proclamation. It was an open call to arms, exhorting the common people to rise up against the treacherous British and to overthrow them. There was a massive response to his rallying call. He led two attacks on the British forces at Quilon, the first time on December 30th 1808, and then on 15th January 1809, but both these attempts failed. He fled to Trivandrum after these reverses. But even at this moment his thoughts were for the safety of his king and country. He advised his king, “Maharaja, should the British ever question Your Highness, then please tell them that you had no hand in all these events”.
    The Maharaja thoroughly alarmed at the turn of events denied having any knowledge of Velu Thambi’s activities. In February 1809 he officially dismissed him in order to appease the British. Velu Thambi left Thiruvananthapuram for the deep jungles of Travancore. The patriot carried a price of Rs.50,000 on his head and a massive man hunt was launched for him. The unfortunate hero had taken refuge in an empty house at Mannadi in central Travancore. Misfortune seemed to dog his footsteps. His servant, who was apprehended by the officers while walking through the streets, revealed to them his master’s hiding place. Velu Thambi on hearing of his servant’s treachery, fled along with his brother to a shrine inside the forests.
    They had hardly spent a while alone at the shrine when they heard the thunder of hoof beats drawing increasingly closer. There was no doubt as to who was approaching. Velu Thambi calmly held his dagger out to his brother and said, “Please end my life and save me from infamy.” His brother was too horrified to even move so he turned his weapon upon himself. A little later, the British troops burst in to capture him only to see his bleeding remains. His brother was taken to Quilon and executed. Velu Thambi’s treacherous servant received the promised award of Rs.50, 000.
    More than two hundred years have passed since these momentous happenings, but the people remember the martyr with deep gratitude even to this day. The Kerala Government has set up at Mannadi in his memory a research institute, a park, a museum and a bronze statue. His sword, which is kept in the Napier Museum at Trivandrum, is a mute reminder of the heroic struggle of this patriot against British dominance. Another statue of Velu Thambi now gazes down over the main thoroughfare in Trivandrum in front of the Government Secretariat. On festive occasions, the Secretariat grounds are illuminated and the brilliant lights throw the statue in sharp relief, symbolizing as it were, the deep reverence held by the present times towards the heroic past.

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    Velu Thampi Thalavai Memorial House, Thalakulam - 1